Solon files bill labeling health warnings on alcoholic drinks
MANILA, Philippines — Muntinlupa Rep. Ruffy Biazon has filed a bill seeking to label alcoholic drinks with health warnings on the negative effects of drinking alcohol.
In filing House Bill No. 4059 Tuesday, Biazon said the labeling of alcoholic beverages with a health warning would “ensure that persons consuming alcohol are adequately informed of the dangers” of drinking.
The proposed measure also covers establishments that sell mixed alcoholic drinks such as cocktails and other similar concoctions, requiring the inclusion of health warnings at the section of the menu where mixed alcoholic drinks are listed.
Once enacted into law, the bill would slap violators with a fine of P1 million for the first offense, P2 million for the second, and P3 million and revocation of license on the third offense.
“Government must be consistent in how it deals with what is determined to be harmful to people. In taxing the ‘sin products’, we applied the policy for both alcohol and tobacco, even using the health angle as a justification,” Biazon said in a statement Thursday.
“So if we have placed health warnings on cigarettes, so should we do the same for alcohol,” he added.
The congressman also said he recently filed a bill proposing the installation of health warnings at designated smoking areas to raise awareness about the dangers of cigarettes among smokers.
Citing World Health Organization data, Biazon pointed out that worldwide, 3 million deaths every year result from harmful use of alcohol, while the harmful use of alcohol is a causal factor in more than 200 disease and injury conditions.
“Alcohol is also addicting, with alcoholism plaguing society in the same way as narcotics addiction. Both are substance abuse which lead to disease and mental health problems,” Biazon explained.
“But unlike cigarettes which have an effect mainly on the user and to those in close proximity, alcohol can cause harm or even death to others because of its effect on the person consuming the substance,” he added.
Last Tuesday, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed on third and final reading House Bill No. 1026 which would gradually increase excise tax rates on liquor and heated tobacco and vapor products. /muf
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